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Press Released: 12 Oct 2010

OPERA America, with Support of the National Endowment for the Arts, Announces National Opera Week 2010

October 29 – November 7, 2010

One hundred opera companies, schools and organizations in 33 states across the country (see attachment for full list) will celebrate the second National Opera Week from October 29 – November 7, 2010 by offering free, accessible events to their communities. National Opera Week is organized by OPERA America, the national service organization for opera (www.operaamerica.org/now), with support of the National Endowment for the Arts.

National Opera Week celebrates the vitality of opera in America as a contemporary cultural expression. The strength and diversity of established opera companies, community opera ensembles and opera training programs across the United States will be shared through a variety of free and accessible activities for opera lovers and newcomers to the art form. Coinciding with the presentation of the NEA Opera Honors in Washington, D.C., organizations nationwide offer a range of free programs for the public that demonstrate the allure and accessibility of this most multi-media of the arts. From open houses, lecture/demonstrations and community performances to the presentation of the nation’s highest award in the field, National Opera Week brings the inventiveness and excitement of opera to a broader national audience (see attachment for examples).

“National Opera Week is an opportunity to highlight the astounding energy and creativity of opera activity across the United States today,” stated Marc A. Scorca, president & CEO of OPERA America. “There is something for everyone during National Opera Week, providing both the seasoned attendee and newcomer a chance to learn about, experience and enjoy the art form in an informal setting.”

In addition to celebrating the exciting ongoing opera activity in the United States, National Opera Week honors the outstanding careers of the 2010 NEA Opera Honors recipients: Soprano Martina Arroyo, General Director David DiChiera, Composer Philip Glass and Music Director Eve Queler. The 2010 NEA Opera Honors will take place on Friday, October 22 at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. (www.neaoperahonors.org).

Noteworthy National Opera Week events include The Atlanta Opera’s 24-Hour Opera Project, during which operas of 7-10 minutes in length will be composed, rehearsed and performed; performances of favorite opera selections at various distinct landmarks all over town with Chicago Opera Theater; a complete behind-the-scenes look at Boston Lyric Opera; and an informal French aria competition at a neighborhood café with Opéra Français de New York.

Select Activities

The Atlanta Opera (Atlanta, GA)
24-Hour Opera Project: The Atlanta Opera will produce a 24-Hour Opera Project in collaboration with the Georgia State University School of Music, Clark Atlanta University and University of West Georgia. The project will provide area artists with an opportunity to showcase their creative talents through this unique project. Artists will submit applications and be matched into teams. Composers will have 12 hours to write a 7-10 minute opera. Upon completion, compositions will be randomly assigned to stage directors, who will draft singers from a pool of applicants to rehearse and ultimately perform the piece that same evening — all within 24 hours. The public is invited to attend the culminating showcase, during which opera experts will judge and award prizes to the participants. Showcase: Sunday, November 7 at 7:30 p.m. at the Florence Kopleff Recital Hall on the campus of Georgia State University.

Boston Lyric Opera (Boston, MA)
Free Open House at the Shubert Theatre: Boston Lyric Opera’s Opera Week events will showcase the company’s adaptation of Scottish Opera’s Tosca, which opens November 5. The next morning, BLO will welcome the community to the Citi Performing Arts CenterSM Shubert Theatre for its free Open House. This event will feature performances, backstage tours and musical activities for all ages. It will also include the final round of competition of the second annual Aria Contest for Teens, emceed by acclaimed arts and entertainment critic Joyce Kulhawik. Saturday, November 6 from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at the Shubert Theatre.

Chicago Opera Theater (Chicago, IL)
Pop-Up Opera: Chicago Opera Theater and the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs present “Pop-up Opera” around Chicago during National Opera Week — short performances of opera “favorites” at iconic Chicago locations. Friday, October 29 to Friday, November 5 throughout Chicago.

Fargo-Moorhead Opera (Fargo, ND)
Food for the Witch: All Fargo-Moorhead and surrounding area high school students will receive a free ticket to Engelbert Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel performed by Fargo-Moorhead Opera with a donation of a non-perishable food item. The food items will be collected at the ticketing kiosk in exchange for the ticket. Food will benefit the Great Plains Food Bank. Friday, October 29 at 8:00 p.m. and Sunday, October 31 at 2:00 p.m. at Festival Hall of North Dakota State University in Fargo.

Madison Opera (Madison, WI)
Kids in the Rotunda: For the third consecutive season, Madison Opera partners with Kids in the Rotunda to help introduce the youngest community members to opera. Children are invited to listen to opera and decorate wedding cake stencils to be displayed November 5 and 7 during performances of The Marriage of Figaro. Saturday, October 23 from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at Overture Center for the Arts.

Michigan Opera Theatre (Detroit, MI)
Family Open House: Michigan Opera Theatre invites the community to a free Family Open House at the Detroit Opera House. Free tours include a visit to the costume, wig and makeup shops and a chance to go backstage! Saturday, November 6 from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at the Detroit Opera House.

New Orleans Opera Association (New Orleans, LA)
Opera on Tap at the Inn on Bourbon: The finest young, local and regional singers perform a 90-minute concert of opera favorites. This is part of a series, but for National Opera Week the performance will be broadcast through speakers out onto Bourbon Street, joining the mix of existing bar music. Tourists will hear opera with rock and roll, blues and jazz as they stroll down the famous Bourbon Street. Wednesday, November 3 at 7:00 p.m. at the Inn on Bourbon in New Orleans.

Opéra Français de New York (New York, NY)
BYO French Aria Competition: OFNY is hosting an informal “Bring your own French aria” vocal competition for New York area singers at the West Village music club, Caffè Vivaldi. Audience applause will decide the lucky winner who will receive a double subscription to OFNY’s 2010-2011 season. Five singers will be selected for the opportunity to perform their best French aria. All experience levels are welcome. Tuesday, November 2 at 7:00 p.m. at Caffè Vivaldi in New York City.

Opera for the Young (Madison, WI)
The Pirates of Penzance: Opera for the Young and the Madison Children's Museum kick off National Opera Week in Madison with a free performance of The Pirates of Penzance. The community is invited to join in the fun and come dressed in Halloween costumes. (Little pirates get priority seating.) Friday, October 29 at 2:00 p.m. at the Madison Children’s Museum.

Sarasota Opera (Sarasota, FL)
Bring-a-Friend Career Day: Sarasota Opera and Sarasota Youth Opera hold its annual Bring-a-Friend Career Day. Young singers, their parents and their friends are treated to a performance by Apprentice Artists, who also speak to participants about careers in opera and answer questions. Also invited are local child-centered organizations like Boys and Girls Clubs, Girls Inc., etc. This is followed by a “meet-and-greet” session. Saturday, November 6 at the Sarasota Opera House.

Webster University (Saint Louis, MO)
Opera at Plaza Frontenac: Students from the Webster University Opera Studio will sing opera arias and ensembles in Plaza Frontenac’s center court. Saturday, November 6 at 1:00 and 2:00 p.m. at Plaza Frontenac in Saint Louis.

Activities in 33 States
Alabama (11)
Arizona (1)
California (7)
Colorado (4)
District of Columbia (5)
Florida (11)
Georgia (4)
Illinois (5)
Kansas (1)
Kentucky (1)
Louisiana (4)
Maine (1)
Maryland (2)
Massachusetts (7)
Michigan (1)
Minnesota (1)
Mississippi (1)
Missouri (3)
New Hampshire (2)
New Jersey (1)
New Mexico (1)
New York (23)
North Carolina (1)
North Dakota (2)
Ohio (5)
Oregon (5)
Pennsylvania (7)
South Carolina (1)
Tennessee (5)
Texas (20)
Virginia (4)
Washington (2)
Wisconsin (13)
100 National Opera Week Partners

The Academy of Vocal Arts

American Lyric Theater

American Opera Projects

Annapolis Opera

Arizona Opera

The Atlanta Opera

Austin Lyric Opera

Boston Early Music Festival

Boston Lyric Opera

Boston University, College of Fine Arts

Center City Opera Theater

Central City Opera

Chelsea Opera

Chicago Opera Theater

The Dallas Opera

Dayton Opera Association

Divergence Vocal Theater

Eastman Opera Theatre

Encompass New Opera Theatre

Eugene Opera

Fargo-Moorhead Opera

Florentine Opera Company

Florida Grand Opera

Florida State University

The Glimmerglass Festival

Greensboro Opera Company

Guerilla Opera

Houston Grand Opera

Kentucky Opera

Knoxville Opera

Lake George Opera at Saratoga

The Little Opera Theatre of NY

Long Beach Opera

Los Angeles Opera

Loveland Opera Theatre

Lyric Opera of Kansas City

Madison Opera

Manhattan School of Music

Metropolis Opera Project

Miami Lyric Opera

Michigan Opera Theatre

Minnesota Opera

Mississippi Opera Association

Mobile Opera

Muddy River Opera Company

Nashville Opera

National Endowment for the Arts

New Orleans Opera Association

New York City Opera

Nickel City Opera

OPERA America

Opera Birmingham

Opera Columbus

Opera Company of Philadelphia

Opera for the Young

Opéra Français de New York

Opera in the Heights

Opera Lafayette

Opera Memphis

Opera New Jersey

Opera North

Opera on the James

Opera Orchestra of New York

Opera Roanoke

Opera San José

Opera San Luis Obispo

Opera Tampa

Opera Theater of Pittsburgh

Opera Theatre of Saint Louis

Opera Vivente

Opera Volunteers International

Oswego Opera Theatre

Palm Beach Opera

Pittsburgh Opera

Portland Opera


Rice University - The Shepherd School of Music

Richard Wagner Society of New York

San Antonio Opera

San Diego Opera Association

The Santa Fe Opera

Sarasota Opera

Seattle Opera

Shreveport Opera

Syracuse Opera

Tacoma Opera

Temple University Boyer College of Music

Texas Christian University School of Music

Townsend School of Music

Tri-Cities Opera Company

University of Alabama

University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music

University of Colorado, Boulder

University of South Carolina-Opera at USC

University of the Pacific

Virginia Opera

Washington National Opera

Webster University

West Bay Opera Association, Inc.

Wichita State University Opera Theatre



For more information on OPERA America, visit About Us.

For press inquiries, contact Press@operaamerica.org or 212.796.8628.